America's Retailers Applaud Senate Vote on Marketplace Fairness Act

Overwhelming vote foreshadows imminent passage of long-awaited fix for Main Street retailers

Apr 22, 2013, 18:27 ET from Retail Industry Leaders Association

ARLINGTON, Va., April 22, 2013 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- The Retail Industry Leaders Association (RILA) issued the following statement in response to a vote in the United States Senate tonight on the Marketplace Fairness Act. The bill, S. 743, gives states the power – if they so choose – to require online-only retailers to collect the state sales tax due on sales made, just as Main Street retailers are required to do. The Senate voted 74 to 20 to bring the legislation to the floor for debate.

"Today's vote is yet another clear signal that the special treatment of online-only retailers will soon be a thing of the past," said Bill Hughes, senior vice president for government affairs.

"For too long Main Street retailers have faced tax rules that put them at a disadvantage to out of state, online-only retailers. We welcome this week's debate and the increasingly inevitable prospect that the playing field will soon be level for all retailers," said Hughes.

Last month the Senate voted 75 to 24 in favor of a Marketplace Fairness Act amendment to the FY 2014 Budget Resolution introduced by Senator Mike Enzi (R-WY) and with outspoken bipartisan support from Senator Richard Durbin (D-IL) and Lamar Alexander (R-TN).

The Marketplace Fairness Act was outlined in RILA's 2013 public policy agenda as one of the top priorities for the industry: Retail Industry Leaders Association 2013 Public Policy Agenda: Empowering Retailers and Consumers to Grow the Economy.

Identical legislation in the U.S. House of Representatives, introduced by Representatives Steve Womack (R-AR) and Jackie Speier (D-CA), has generated strong bipartisan support.

RILA is the trade association of the world's largest and most innovative retail companies. RILA members include more than 200 retailers, product manufacturers, and service suppliers, which together account for more than $1.5 trillion in annual sales, millions of American jobs and more than 100,000 stores, manufacturing facilities and distribution centers domestically and abroad.

SOURCE Retail Industry Leaders Association